Originally posted: Sunday, February 15, 2009 on Blogger

I picked up Basara 24 with 23, so I didn’t have to wait long to read this. I also already have 25, so the impression will be done after I finish this one :)

Summary


Just as the last volume left off, Sarasa is making her way to Kyoto to see Asagi and Shuri is determined to follow after her, so Nakijin agrees to go with him. Ageha, who also notices her, decides he need to discover what Hiragawa was plotting at the base of the palace.

When Sarasa storms the palace, Ran and Umi of the four virtues confront her. However, Kikune shows up and helps Sarasa out, she tells her that this is her fight, so Sarasa leaves her. Ichimatsu also shows up, but Kikune also tells him this is her fight. He tells her he will wait for her to finish.

Sarasa makes it to Asagi and asks him to come home with her. But it appears that Asagi isn’t willing to do so, just then Shuri comes to the door and asks Sarasa to open it. Sarasa decides she must charge at Asagi if she cannot change his decision just as Nakijin breaks the door open and Shuri storms in. However instead of piercing her with his sword, Asagi embraces Sarasa. The embrace doesn’t last long, however, because Shuri tears Sarasa away from Asagi. While Asagi is insulting Shuri, Hiiragi comes into the room, he survived the fall, but is now missing an arm like Shuri. Asagi makes his intentions clear, he will kill Hiiragi; he also became the King so that the people would despise the monarchy and never wish to return to this form of rule.

Sarasa is ashamed of her lack of trust, so she decides to trust him now and leaves Hiiragi to Asagi, while she and Shuri go see Ukon the king, or Shuri’s dad. King Ukon is a desecrate old man, who steps down after trying to shoot Sarasa with his bow. Sarasa, however, does not want him to step down, because then the burden of the monarchy falls on Shuri, and she knows that the price he will have to pay is one of blood. But when she tries to urge the King to face his people, Shuri stops her and lets his father go with Tachibana.

Meanwhile, Asagi has killed Hiragii and he now confronts Ginko. Ginko tells him that he isn’t really from the royal family and that she found him and took him in like the four virtues. She muses that his name Asagi means a cheap blue color used in prisoner’s clothing, a name that fits him well, and that he was a fool to believe her when she said he was the real blue king. Asagi, enraged lowers his sword on her but stops before he can hurt her, saying that he’s had enough, and then he leaves. Ginko calls back to him and tells him to kill her, but when he doesn’t come back, she sets the contraption that Hiragawa discovered in motion.

Ageha, who is underground, finds the contraption just as Ginko sets it in motion. Realizing that the whole building will collapse, he sends Kagero to Sarasa to warn her of the danger as he looks for a way to stop the contraption itself. However, the Yarogumi show up and Ageha has to fend off the attacks of their commander as well as arrows.

Meanwhile Kikune has managed to keep herself alive, but just as she is about to overpower Ran, Umi prepares to strike back. Before he can, however, Ichimatsu stabs him. Kikune is a little annoyed, but also happy that Ichimatsu helped her. Kagero then delivers to them Ageha’s letter, and they realize they must flee.

Finally, Kagero brings Sarasa the letter, and she and Shuri begin to leave, but Sarasa notices that Shuri is very weak and isn’t moving as fast as he can. Shuri then tells Sarasa to leave him and go ahead. When she asks what about him, he tells her that he will be right behind, but just as he says that, Sarasa remembers Nagi’s words and realizes that he won’t be able to follow her. This volumes closes with a stunned Sarasa, realizing Shuri is going to die if he doesn’t start moving again.

My Thoughts


This volume feels a bit rushed, but it’s still really well done. I can tell Tamura-san is trying her best to close up the loose ends before the finale next volume. In particular, I wish Kikune’s struggle was a bit more fleshed out, as well as Asagi’s fight. But I guess I’m not too upset about the fight because fight scenes are not what Basara is about. xD And Asagi’s large single panel fight scene was very poetic and pretty, so I’m pretty satisfied. =D Other then that, it’s another satisfying volume. Please look forward for my impression of 25 some time in March =D

There are a lot of extras this volume, including a few pages of Tamura-san’s thoughts and illustrations, a single page strip featuring Shuri and Shido before he had died (hence taking place sometime in volume 3-4ish, chronologically) And two comedic one shots about Basara: the first titled “Basara Academy” is what basara would look like if it was a romantic comedy. I actually found it really funny, especially seeing the alter egos of the main cast. xD The second is titled “If they Played Games” and it’s basically about dead Taro going around and observing what kind of games the cast of basara likes to play. Overall, they were a nice diversion from the main story’s more sombre tone.

–SW

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