Last week’s episode gave us some interesting developments. We learn that a lot of parties are also after the Parasites, foremost of which is the Yotsuba clan. We also had an unexpected revelation from a surprising character. Raymond, Shizuku’s classmate in the USNA, turned out to be one of the Seven Sages, a group of mysterious Magicians. And while Ray is not hostile, he tasked Tatsuya with destroying the Parasites as a favor.
Thus, episode 10 is about that battle, though we have an opening scene with Lina encountering Tatsuya at school and promising to never hold back. But this is not the usual cheerful and confident Lina we’ve come to know; instead, Lina is obviously depressed—a fact that Tatsuya noticed.
We then switch at last to the beginning of the final battle with Parasites. And much like the last encounter, a third party has intervened: the Batto-tai under the Kudou clan. What’s interesting to note here is that these guys are all students of the Chiba clan, and it is stated in the novel that Chiba Naotsugu intervened and fought them alongside Erika and Leo. The soldiers even hesitated at the sight of their teachers, but engaged them nonetheless. However that scene was entirely removed from this episode, much like everything related to Erika’s subplot.
The fight with the Parasites is probably one of the best ones in this season, not just because of the well-done choreography, but also since it ties to the characterization of Lina. Here we finally see just how badly the entire mission has taken its toll on her mind—from killing her comrades to facing defeat at the hands of Tatsuya and Miyuki. As Tatsuya has said before, Lina is not fit to be a soldier. And it becomes evident when she did not listen to Tatsuya’s warning about killing the Parasites’ hosts, leading to an even bigger problem.
Lina has become desperate, and it shows in her attacks. Gone was the confident and skilled Angie Sirius; instead, the one fighting in this battle is just Angelina Shields, a simple high school girl who just wants to finish her mission and return home while proving to everyone that she still matters despite her failures.
When everything is said and done, thanks with the combined powers of the Shiba siblings, Lina finally realizes how weak she is, and you can’t help but feel pity for her as she stares at Tatsuya and Miyuki who dealt the final blow. We all have to realize that before the Parasite incident, Angie Sirius is ranked among the most powerful Strategic-class magicians, only for that truth to be questioned by not just one, but two Japanese high school students. Naturally, her self-esteem will take a serious blow. And a serious and crippling blow it did take.
But not all hope is lost. In true Tatsuya fashion, he offered Lina a chance to leave the army if she wishes. Now this may come off as a surprise, but not entirely unexpected. After all, Tatsuya’s situation is quite similar to her. Much like Lina, he was made to be a weapon, a tool for others. But unlike Lina who has no choice, Tatsuya chose his path all for his sister. In many ways, they are alike. But in other ways, Tatsuya and Lina are worlds apart.
However, while Lina could not decide yet, you can tell that Tatsuya’s words had an effect to her as she stares in longing while Tatsuya and Miyuki finally leave. One can then say that Lina has truly fallen in love with her rival.
While this episode has some skipped scenes, it has a far better pacing and execution than the previous ones, and thus deserves an 8/10. With the Visitor Arc all but finished, I cannot say at this point what they will adapt. After all, we have two episodes left. Nevertheless, I’m sure we’ll all enjoy it.