Hatena Illusion Episode 5
After watching this episode, I have a lot of mixed feelings about the overall execution of Yumemi’s case. Episode 4 was a total snooze-fest, and it had a hard time keeping my attention. So it comes as no surprise how when I start this episode, I immediately found myself confused as to why Yumemi still refuses to go to school. At first I had thought it was because she was just being stubborn like some characters can be, but then I realized it was because her case wasn’t solved yet!
As it turns out, the source of the problem lies in the Clay Bear that was briefly mentioned in last week’s episode. And truthfully, as much as I hate to admit it, (I plead guilty), that darn clay bear slipped right under my nose. So as soon as it was mentioned, I stopped watching this episode and went back to episode 4 to get a recap on what it was all about, and then started episode 5 from the beginning again. So for those who completely missed it like I did, here’s the gist of it:
Last week (episode 4), there were two occasions when they brought up the bear: The first time was when Yumemi’s classmate told Makoto and the others about how one of the boys broke the bear she made out of clay. We are told that while she got upset, there was no fuss and she made she made it over again right away. The second time, we see the boy in the stripe and star shirt apologizing for smashing her work because he thought it was gross. Then later, when the boys come to apologize for the stupid things they did, we see Yumemi run back to her room deliberating how to answer someone apologizing.
This week (episode 5), when Makoto goes to school again to investigate a rumor about a bear monster at Yumemi’s school, the boys tell him the reason why Yumemi isn’t coming to school is because the boy who got smacked by her clay figure made a big fuss about it being a monster, and since then she stopped coming to school.
So basically real reason why Yumemi didn’t want to go to school was because she had accidentally created an artifact that had attacked her classmate.
That’s right, Yumemi has inherited Maeve’s ability to produce artifacts, but she’s not happy about it. Since she recognizes how much Kana wished she were more like her mother, she has desperately tried to keep her powers a secret. That’s why she didn’t want her to get involved, and tried to have it quietly resolved by sending Gaugau to retrieve before anyone could notice. But in the end, her plans were foiled when Kana and Makoto defied the orders from Jeeves to not go out hunting for artifacts without parental permission and with that the cat was out of the bag.
This is why it was very important for Maeve to make an appearance. Although she couldn’t be there in person, just enabling her to communicate with her daughters through an artifact in a very intimate way made a huge difference. (And as most of us suspected, the reason why she hasn’t returned home is being held up in some way or another by her family.) This case was not one that could be solved by Makoto, Kana or anyone else. Yumemi needed to have that conversation with her mother about her powers, and be given some guidance on how to handle it. And through that we learned how easy it is for their emotions to influence the nature of the artifact, making them safe, friendly (like Gaugau, who as it turns out, can speak) or even aggressive and dangerous. That is why is important to be level-headed and practice mediation. But along with her guidance comes a warning: they must keep her powers a secret. Because as soon as the word gets out, Yumemi will have target on her back and their grandmother Morrigan L’Ihuta, will have her dragged back to the village Maeve had ran away from.
And yet, despite knowing what’s at stake here, I am surprised Kana still stubbornly insists Yumemi should still go to school. All Yumemi is doing right now is following their mother’s advice of taking time to learn how to control her powers. I think it’s fair to say should be a priority, otherwise she will risk exposing herself, and stay in the safety of their home. Heck, for all we know, due to the clay bear incident, her relatives may already caught the winds of the rumors that were circling around it.
However while Yumemi’s case has more or less been resolved, we can see that Kana still has a lot of unresolved problems that are bothering her. Namely with her struggle of living up to her mother’s expectations and following her footsteps. Right now Kana feels like a failure for being unable to help her sister (especially when she wouldn’t open up to her) and do her part of assisting their mother out by retrieving the artifacts. She is also suffering from that complex of not inheriting her mother’s traits and abilities, which is why she even went as far of telling Yumemi she should take the Crest, which she refuses to do. In fact, speaking of which, it seems Yumemi understand why their mother entrusted it to her in the first place.
Then there is also the fact that Kana misses her mother dearly, and wants to be in the arms of comfort and guidance. It really puts into perspective how Kana’s drive to retrieve all the stolen artifacts isn’t necessarily about taking away her mother’s sadness, but to bring her home sooner than later. It is something her aunt Mariah seems to be trying to exploit when she is the most vulnerable by making a proposition to lure her out. Unfortunately, there is a good chance that Kana will take the bait despite being aware of the obvious risks.
Overall this episode was waaaaayyyy better than the last one. I appreciate that this episode offered more depth to both Kana’s and Yumemi’s character, and finally the plot feels like it’s starting to find it’s momentum. Tomitomi who made the appearance at the end of the episode last week didn’t have a big role this week beyond trying to bait Kana out to her exhibit to ‘hand over’ the golden artifact. Kana thinks she’s talking about ‘Muff’, but I am under the impression it is probably the Crest she is talking about. I am glad that Jeeves dissuaded Kana from going to the exhibit to retrieve what they saw in a video to be supposedly one of Maeve’s artifacts. However they don’t know whether or not it’s the real thing and it was obvious that it’s a trap, so that mission been put off for another episode. For how long, who knows? Maybe the location Miriah told Kana to meet her next week will be at the same exhibit, but we will have to wait until next week to find out!