The Trial Enrollment (Part 3)
|←Chapter 25: "The Trial Enrollment (Part 2)"||Chapter 27: "The Bodyguard (Part 1)" →|
|List of Chapters |Image Gallery|
|With Maka paralyzed by the rebirth of the witch Arachne, the youngest Death Scythe Justin Law arrives to repel her and her weapon Giriko. Death therefore realizes that the resurrection of the Kishin has allowed Arachne's organization Arachnophobia to rise as a new threat to the DWMA.|
Outskirts of Loew Village
Crona is fearful upon recognizing the Soul Wavelength of this fan-holding woman who has formed out of the spiders around the Oldest Golem—and it is a wavelength similar to that of Medusa. Maka Albarn, still paralyzed from the Golem's internal collection of spider threads, also seems to recognize this witch.
Still in his weapon form clutched by the Golem, Giriko offers to explain to this fan-holding witch, Arachne, what she has missed, but she holds up a hand to silence him, already understanding what has transpired. In fact, Arachne knows so much that she knows who Maka and Soul Eater are! To prove as such, Arachne mentions the argument Maka and Soul had last night in their apartment, alone, over who burned their curry (it was Soul who forgot to turn off the stove). Arachne then explains that for 800 years she has had her body divided into multiple spiders across the world, all of which all her to see everything at once, and one of which was spying on Maka and Soul in their apartment.
Arachne then faces Crona, "the child of my baby sister, Medusa." Arachne toys with Crona, saying the child was hardly loved at all by anyone, so Arachne offers to provide her love to Crona. Although trembling and tears forming in the eyes, Crona glares at this witch.
Death is surprised Arachne has survived for 800 years. He remembers that it was Arachne who used witches' souls to combine humans with weapons to create Demon Weapons, as it is witches whose souls possess the ability to transform. To acquire these witches' souls, Arachne had to kill many witches, which led to her being hunted by not only witches but by Death himself.
It was in Loew Village 800 years ago that Death shouted for Arachne, or "that godforsaken shank of a pig slut whore" and "bitch", to show herself. But at that time, Death had not anticipated that Arachne would hide herself by scattering portions of her body as spiders.
Outskirts of Loew Village
As Arachne chuckled at the offer of providing love to Crona, the Demon Sword meister rushes at the witch, with Ragnarok shouting words of encouragement to "kill the bitch." But, with just her fan, Arachne blocks Ragnarok. As Arachne speaks calmly of the surprise to be an aunt now 800 years later, she smacks Crona away with her fan and orders Giriko to kill "this insolent child."
Giriko has already transformed back into his human form, kicking Crona back so the meister stumbles across the battlefield. But Crona manages to roll through the stumble, back on feet and dashing at Giriko to slice him with Ragnarok. But then Crona feels something wrong, as Black Blood is released through wounds inflicted by just Giriko's kick. Soul is shocked, wondering how just one kick could break through something as hard as the Black Blood. As Arachne mocks Medusa's Black Blood research as being evidently far less powerful than other persons assumed, Giriko explains that his kick was not just with his leg but with chainsaw blades across his shin and foot, a technique he calls Saw Leg. And Giriko notes that his attack was only in second gear.
However, as Ragnarok easily heals Crona's wounds with Black Blood—and demands a thank you from Crona—Giriko realizes he will have to cut Crona apart quickly. Giriko squats, the chains on his feet allowing him to rush forward, like he is roller skating across the battlefield. But Crona is too disgusted by Giriko's squatting position, which makes it look like he is defecating.
Seeing Crona hold out Ragnarok to slice at Giriko as his squatting rush heads towards the meister, Giriko avoids the beheading by flipping through the air, one foot landing on Crona's sword while he uses his other foot to send Saw Leg at Crona's neck, ready to slice off Crona's head. While the Black Blood resists the beheading, Giriko does not relent, as he increases his attack to kill Crona.
A blade swings off the forearm of a young man, dressed in robes emblazoned with crosses, crashing into Giriko and knocking the enemy away from Crona before the Demon Sword meister is beheaded. The young man stands, smoke coming from his forearm, dressed like a priest, and music playing loudly from his earphones. The young man shouts that if Giriko wants a fight, then he can face his Holy Cross Chop, as his arm makes two swift movements to form a cross, each swipe cutting across Giriko and knocking him back. Maka and Soul are shocked to see this young man's attacks, and while Giriko is still on his feet, he is furious that someone has interrupted his battle. Soul realizes the young man turned into a guillotine, yet he is surprised that Giriko survived the attack, having wrapped his chains around his chest to shield against the Holy Cross Chop just a few moments before the fatal attack cut him.
Giriko asks who the the young man is, surprised when the young man does not answer. But Arachne, Maka, and Soul already recognize the opponent as Justin Law, the Death Scythe who arrives with deafening sound. Maka explains that Justin became a Death Scythe four years ago, when he was only thirteen years old, making him the youngest Death Scythe ever. To top it off, Maka adds, Justin has no meister: as a guillotine, he can fight alone.
Justin then shouts—due to the loud earphones, much to Maka and Soul's embarrassment—that he wants all students to stay back while he quickly dispatches Arachne and Giriko. Yet Justin realizes that fighting another meister-less weapon like Giriko will not be easy. Maka sees Giriko and Justin each increase their soul wavelengths, evenly matched. Maka feels Soul's grip on her shoulder increase, as he feels doubt in himself: "I'm a weapon just like they are, so how come I can't do what they can...!?"
Giriko proceeds to kick at Justin, releasing his chain from his legs so he may wrap it around his body so that, upon leaping in the air, he may tug at the chains more quickly as he slices at Justin's body. Giriko the initiates Reverse Gear, which Justin tries to dodge. Justin then transforms his left arm into Carcan Bras to cuff Giriko's right leg, while Justin's right hand clutches Giriko by the vest, drawing Arachne's acolyte forward as Justin attacks with Headbutt of Love. Despite the headbutt, Giriko flips onto his hands so his legs may spin, knocking Justin back while Giriko rights himself to stand again.
Arachne is surprised by this battle, while Maka complains that Giriko and Justin's strength and speed makes it difficult to follow the fight to learn anything for combat—frustrating Ragnarok, who refers to Maka as "such a nerd" to study at a time like this.
Giriko wipes the blood away from his nose from Justin's headbutt, admitting that this battle has revved his engine. He demands Justin take off his earphones, as Justin cannot hear anything with how loud his music is playing. Justin tsks at Giriko, telling this "naughty boy" that he can read lips and knows every foul comment Giriko has made. Giriko grins despite his fury that Justin has been toying with him, pretending not to hear.
Arachne interrupts—and Giriko yells at her, catching himself for letting his anger get the best of him. Arachne informs Giriko that the Oldest Golem is about to lose power, and their ride awaits, hence they must retreat. Giriko orders the Golem to continue the battle, and while he could care less about "some shitbag priest," he promises Justin that he will kill him. Giriko clutches Arachne and uses his Saw Legs along the floor to skate away.
Before Justin can pursue the escaping villains, he sees the Oldest Golem prepare to punch the paralyzed Maka and untransformed Soul. Crona manages to block the punch in time with Ragnarok, but with each new punch, Crona is weakening. Justin remembers that Death ordered him to protect the students first, so he orders the students to fall to the ground due to the impending impact of his attack on the Golem. Justin prays to Death as he prepares his attack, while Maka senses the prayer seems to actually be amplifying Justin's soul wavelength. Justin leaps above the Golem, transforming into a guillotine and performing his lethal move, Law-Abiding Silver Gun, which beheads the Golem, breaking the device.
Justin asks for the students to join him in prayer. As Soul and Crona are quiet and place their hands upon their chests, Soul notices Maka's paralysis prevents her from putting her hand to her chest. Soul chastises his inability to fight as Justin can, feeling useless without his meister. Maka notices Soul's frustration with himself.
Justin removes his headphones and, while thankful the students are safe, urges that they return to the DWMA immediately.
Soul, Crona, Ragnarok, and Justin look down upon Maka, who is resting from her paralysis. While Soul realizes the paralysis of Arachne's spider silk has not yet dissipated, Justin remarks that Maka appears to have weakened further. Maka looks up at these people, angered that they have placed her inside the now opened coffin hitched to Justin's vehicle. As Justin's music plays loudly in his headphones, Maka and Crona join him to pretend that they could not hear Maka—infuriating her not only for Soul and Crona's affected deafness but because she now knows Justin can read lips. Maka's anger only increases as Soul and Justin make small talk about getting Maka to Franken Stein for treatment, their redundant discussion hardly seeming like an extensive, well-thought plan.
Maka's anger is interrupted by Crona, who continues to drop flowers onto the coffin. While Maka claims to appreciate the gesture, her tears are not necessarily out of happiness but upon realizing how Sid Barrett must have felt upon his death.
Forest outside of Loew Village
Giriko is surprised to find a red carpet making a path through the forest for him and Arachne to follow to their ride, a limousine driven by a short, elderly man with a mustache. Arachne asks this steward, Mosquito, whether he has brought her champagne, which he acknowledges, "top of the line."
Arachne and Giriko seat themselves in the back of the limousine, but Giriko cannot relax in such a car—so he uses his Saw Leg to slice the top of the car away, shattering the windows just to produce a sunroof. Mosquito shakes in fury at this delinquent Giriko, while the saw weapon replies with an offer to battle.
Arachne urges both men to calm down. As she is tired, she demands to be brought back to "the castle".
Mosquito stops the limousine to allow Arachne and Giriko to exit. Mosquito holds a handkerchief to his face, weeping with happiness at the witch's return. He promises that the network Arachne has built for 800 years includes the best recruits possible.
Before reaching her castle, around Arachne appear persons of varying heights and builds, cloaked in black robes with white masks over their faces. As confetti explodes around them, they shout praise for the rebirth of their leader, Arachne. With this organization Arachnophobia ready to join her in battle, Arachne promises to defeat Death.
Manga and Anime Differences
- In Episode 27, upon learning from Arachne that Soul was indeed responsible for burning their dinner last night, Maka glares at her weapon, who panics before looking away, frustrated. This visual gag is not present in this chapter.
- In this chapter, 800 years ago, Death screams multiple curses at Arachne as he hunts for her. In Episode 27, Death's shouts are not heard at all, with no hint that he was so coarse in his language.
- This chapter shows that 800 years ago that Arachne divided her body into many spiders. Episode 27 did not show Arachne dividing her body, instead showing her finding the Oldest Golem locked in storage.
- This chapter suggests that Soul says aloud his concerns that he as a weapon cannot do what Giriko and Justin Law can accomplish, yet in Episode 27 Soul seems to have only thought, rather than said aloud, these concerns.
- In this chapter, Arachnophobia members release confetti upon Arachne's return to Baba Yaga Castle, which is seen only in silhouette. In Episode 27, Arachnophobia throws no confetti, and Baba Yaga Castle is seen with more detail, not only as a silhouette.
- The cover features numerous allusions.
- Deathbucks, in name and in the appearance of its logo, resembles the popular United States coffee chain Starbucks. Starbucks is itself an allusion to a character from Herman Melville's novel Moby-Dick, much like the Soul Eater character Ahab alludes to a main character in Moby-Dick.
- Soul's t-shirt is yet another one of Atsushi Ohkubo's allusions to musicians: the shirt's art resembles the cover to the 1970 album Bitches Brew by jazz musician Miles Davis. The shirt even includes the words "Bitches Brew." This album will appear later in Chapter 74 as the album Soul and Liz discuss, and which Soul shows to Maka.
- This issue included a colorized page featuring Maka, Soul, Crona, Ragnarok, Giriko, and Justin.
- Justin prays to "the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost." While this prayer is common in Catholicism, it is not clear that Justin is necessarily Catholic himself, although he resembles a priest and alludes to Catholicism in his dress and techniques' names.
- Giriko refers to Arachne as "ane-san" ("big sister"). Whereas "onee-san" has the same literal meaning, "ane-san" carries the nuance of referring to a woman as tough or formidable, much less polite than calling someone "onee-san."