Black Dragon (Part 1)
|←Chapter 12: "Ultimate Written Exam"||Chapter 14: "Black Dragon (Part 2)" →|
|List of Chapters |Image Gallery|
|Death the Kid and the Thompsons row through the Baltic Sea to find a supposed Black Dragon that consumed an entire town and its residents' souls. They discover the Dragon to be the Ghost Ship Nidhogg, captained by the Flying Dutchman, an evil spirit who reveals to Kid that he is giving these souls to a Kishin who is "closest" to Kid. Before Kid can pass judgment on the Dutchman, Crona arrives to consume all the souls themselves, forcing Kid to confront this new potential Kishin.|
"Run!" a man yells, as a fog sweeps through his town. "The Black Dragon has appeared!" he shouts, as a seemingly horned shadow emerges through the fog. The creature opens at its front. The man screams as a blast rips through the town, leaving what appears to be a bite taken out of the town.
Someone resembling Death stands at the bow of a rowboat, which is rowed by Liz and Patty Thompson. While Patty chants happily, LIz is frustrated that they are having to row to their destination, even as she admits this exercise may be good for her upper arms and weight. The person dressed as Death is Death the Kid, who explains that "something swallowed up a whole crowd of people--and a good part of the town along with them." Kid then senses a large number of soul responses near, as from the shadows emerges that same creature that appeared along the Baltic Coast. Only this Black Dragon is not a creature: it is the Ghost Ship Nidhogg.
Kid orders the Thompsons to row them quickly to the ship. Liz is scared at the prospect of approaching a ship that may have ghosts on it, but Patty rows furiously—slamming their boat into the side of the ship, the force of impact slamming Kid into the side of the ship. Kid criticizes Patty for not stopping, then tells her that if she is to slam him into the ship, she must do so right in the center of it. Liz is surprised at Kid's adamance that Patty again crash into the ship, this time in the center. While Kid is dizzy and Liz calls her peers "morons," Patty laughs as Kid orders the trio to board the ship. Liz then chastises herself for being "so distracted by your display of stupidity" that she board the ship without hesitation.
Aboard the ship, Kid senses the souls inside. Despite Liz's protests, the trio enter. But behind them, a hat is atop the deck—and it begins to shake, a head appearing from below it as the captain of the Nidhogg, the Flying Dutchman, emerges with a large firearm. "Now I have more souls to offer the Kishin-sama," the Dutchman says with a laugh.
Inside the ship, the scared Liz huddles close to her sister. Kid opens a door to reveal a room full of disembodied souls. Kid is worried that someone is collecting the souls of so many good people, and as a shinigami, he will take them into custody. Patty asks whether they may take the souls themselves, but Kid adamantly warns her that such action would make her into a Kishin.
Before Kid can collect the souls, the Dutchman dissolves out of the floor below Kid, aiming his firearm at this shinigami. Kid dodges the attack, but the Dutchman smirks and shouts, "Nidhogg!" Liz then feels herself falling, as the floorboards below her open, swallowing her in the ship's lower level, to Patty's amusement—upsetting Kid further.
The Nidhogg then growls as Kid and Patty feel vibrations through the floorboards. The Dutchman explains that he and the ship are one in the same, referring to these lower decks as his own stomach to digest Kid's team. Kid refers to the Dutchman as "an evil spirit" and demands to know what he is doing with these souls. The Dutchman explains, "Thanks to the Shinigami, I'm more confused than I've ever been, so I'm going to offer the souls to the Kishin." Kid assumes the Dutchman is referring to Ragnarok, but the Dutchman refers to that Demon Sword as a "rookie." Instead, the Dutchman explains, "I'm doing it for the Kishin who's closest to you guys." Kid is confused, which the Dutchman admits makes sense, as such information is "not something for a kid like you to know." The Dutchman elaborates: "People are waiting for the Kishin's song," because all people desire the kind of power the Kishin represents.
The Dutchman brings one soul to his tongue as he aims and fires upon Kid, forcing the young shinigami to jump out of his cloak and dodge. Patty offers to transform into her weapon form, but Kid, sweating, refuses: "I can't do it."
In the level below, Liz is trembling, realizing that Kid is unarmed: he will not use Patty as a weapon without having Liz to provide symmetry. Liz tries to motivate herself to reunite with Kid by saying she must not be afraid of ghosts, as she herself is one of the Thompsons, the Demons of Brooklyn. But this memory of her former hardcore New York City life just reminds her how she got into this mess: one time, in an alley, Liz had cornered someone and aimed her demon pistol sister at him to blackmail him. This person was Kid, which is how she first met her future meister.
Liz stops to ponder aloud whether she is going in the correct direction. "Yes, this way," a voice calls to Liz. Liz gapes at the person before her, then falls to the floor, wailing that she has encountered the ghost of a child, floating above her. The ghost offers to lead Liz to her friends, and despite her repeated promises, Liz shouts that this ghost is lying. Furious, the girl screams that Liz must follow her before she pummels Liz. Liz shrieks then quietly agrees to follow, while silently telling Patty that she is "in a tight spot." The ghost leads Liz, all the while complaining that if she had lived to be as old as Liz her attractiveness would "knock everyone's socks off!" The intimidated Liz agrees.
Meanwhile, as Kid refuses to use only Patty as his weapon, the two of them are running through the ship's halls, dodging the Dutchman's pistol fire. Kid asks where Liz could be.
It turns out the ghost girl has sought help to guide Liz to her friends: most ghosts. Even as the ghosts call Liz "Nee-chan," Liz shrieks and collapses to the floor again, infuriating the ghost girl.
The Dutchman blocks Kid's path through one hall, chiding the shinigami for not demonstrating his godly powers against someone like him, "an evil spirit who worships the Kishin and kills innocent people." Kid explains that he does not kill those who are evil: after all, every person has evil within them. His goal, instead, is for balance, and someone who is overwhelmingly evil like this Dutchman is a problem. The Dutchman is furious that Kid speaks of some ideal that he expects others to follow like an edict given by a god. Kid, however, does not care whether he has upset the Dutchman. "I won't be satisfied until this is an absolutely perfect world!" Kid responds. The Dutchman assumes that Kid means he will take away his freedom, but Kid says that as a shinigami he will give no freedom to kill.
Meanwhile, a crowd of ghosts has returned Liz to the ship's deck, but as Liz does not see Kid and Patty present, she collapses again and worries the ghost girl is tricking her. The ghost girl shouts that her friends are coming so she should shut up. At that moment, the deck in front of Liz explodes, Kid and Patty hurled up from it into the air. When the two land, Kid blames Liz's absence for why he could not arm himself in combat, which Liz claims is his own fault. They then turn their attention to the Dutchman, who laughs as he promises not to let the trio escape him. Kid commands the Thompsons to transform. Now armed with his twin Demon Pistols, Kid prepares to attack the Dutchman who flies over him.
But a blade shoots through the sky and through the mouth of the Dutchman, severing his head at the jaw. This blade is the demon sword Ragnarok, and out of the fog emerges Crona, who proceeds to slice into the Dutchman's gut while Crona slurps. Crona then drives their blade into the ship's deck, initiating a Scream Resonance that draws all the souls out of the ship's lower deck and into the air, sucking them into the mouth opening on Ragnarok's sword form. As these souls are whisked away, so are the ghosts, the little girl who guided Liz appearing before her one more time to wish goodbye to this "cowardly onee-chan." Liz is disturbed at this loss while Kid is surprised at how inhuman appears Crona's soul.
Ragnarok wails and transforms into their usual form—but does not stop transforming, instead taking on a form with an elongated snout, an open mouth, and unfurled wings, resembling those of the mythic Black Dragon.
Manga and Anime Differences
- In Episode 15, when reunited with Kid and Patty, Liz is overjoyed at seeing her sister, until she freezes in horror because she stands so far from them and so much nearer to the Flying Dutchman when Kid commands that she transform. In Chapter 13, Liz does not express this joy, and she is next to Patty when she transforms.
- In Chapter 13, Crona slurps upon their arrival. In Episode 15, Crona does not slurp.
- The Flying Dutchman refers to Asura as the Kishin "closest" to Kid. While his remark refers to Asura as residing within Death City itself, his remark may foreshadow that Asura is another fragment of Death, hence Kid's brother and therefore "close" to him familially.