χ · A Window into Fillmore
One of the casualties of the Clotho/Jünchoon rage combo was Boowray cum Kneue Syltiss knight Bruno Canzian. His Fatima Parasha saved him at the last minute, and later on Sharie Randers spared them, allowing them to be retrieved by the Hathuha forces orbiting Jüno.
Bruno’s name has been changed to Blreno in the English edition. The change obliterates an allusion to the Italian singer of the same name, and so I’ll keep to Nagano’s original choice here. “Bruno” is much more melodious anyway!
Parasha was on the verge of following her twin sister’s fate when the A’p knights stopped Canzian’s beating. That she remains alive after both have reached Kallamity shows us that Canzian is quite different from Syucha’s master Sir Gellow.
During this talk with the A’p knights, we finally get a firm grip on what the Boowrays are. The so-called mercenaries from Both are neither mercenaries nor from Both. Strictly speaking, they’re from nowhere. The Boowrays are a cover that the nations of Hathuha and Fillmore use to intervene militarily without revealing their identity. By using the same outward appearance and color scheme, Hathuha and Fillmore can have their own headdliners pilot their own MH frames without fear and with the added bonus of the legendary terror of the Boowray. The rumors that they’re from Both probably stem from Hathuha’s last usage of the Boowrays, as Hathuha is from Both…
In the Second Battle of Atork, 5 out of the 7 regular Boowrays (not including 2 back up units) were destroyed. Only Yellow and Red, which weren’t in the fighting, were spared. The A’p knights tell Canzian that they will rebuild these 5 on A-Toll frames. The A-Toll is the standard Hathuha MH; the destroyed MHs were built with Siren frames from the Fillmore Empire.
Bruno Canzian’s return to Fillmore absolutely shocked me. I wasn’t expecting this at all, but the more I reread these sections the more it gets to me: how sympathetically is the Fillmore Empire portrayed!!
From the start, Emperor Lader looks quite shaken by the return of Bruno. I thought this was a sham, though. I figured it would turn out like in the mafia movies, where the boss speaks softly to the man who’s messed up and then suddenly smashes his head to a pulp. But this didn’t happen. Instead, Bruno is denied his chance to atone by seppuku and given the much more reasonable option of doing his best to surpass his dead comrades and in doing so, honor them.
If the harakiri reminds us of Japanese culture, Canzian’s first reaction upon stepping outside of the palace only reinforces it: “how beautiful is Kallamity” he says. This aesthetic feeling, in the midst of such an eventful day, is very Japanese.
Bruno Canzian goes on to thank Parasha, surely the cutest most “ahh” scene so far in FSS, and Emperor Lader toasts to Colus III, the Lion of Jüno. Geez, Nagano, do you want us to start rooting for Fillmore now?!
Since it looks like the upcoming major arc will take place in Both, we’ll do well to hash out a basic outline of what this planet is all about.
Both’s rugged landscape presents the least hospitable environment of the four major planets with human life in the Joker Galaxy. And this despite the fact that it has the largest land-to-sea ratio of the fourth. One of the reasons for this unfriendliness is that the planet is home to Joker’s dragon brood.
The records indicate that Both was populated by colonists from the Super-Empire. These colonists managed to strike a deal with the dragons: the continent where humans were allowed to live was called Minogousia. The territory where dragons rule is called Kastepo [or Kastenpo].
As of 2989, the major power in Minogousia is Hathuha, more properly the Hathuha Union Republic or the United Republic of Hathuha. Its makeup is somewhat similar to the Amaterasu Kingdom Demesnes, except that it is constituted by 12 nations instead of the AKD’s 10. Just as Grees is the most powerful nation in the AKD, Hathuhunt is the leading state in Hathuha. There is a fundamental difference, though. The AKD’s leadership is fixed in the Amaterasu dynasty, the rulers of the member Kingdom of Grees. In the case of Hathuha, each leader (the Shaman of Atoll) chooses her successor from among anyone in the Union, any woman that is, who shows a great degree of Diver power.
Divers are magic-users, the psychic counterparts to the physically enhanced headdliners. Ultimately, there is nothing supernatural about them: both divers and headdliners are the product of genetic research done before the age of the Joker Calendar. As it’s often pointed out, if a person from the 16th century were to visit our 21st, he’d think it was all magic. This is not magic, technically speaking.
Divers come in two main flavors: regular divers employ telekinesis for defensive and offensive use. The rarer “pala” [or para] divers can see and at times, travel in the past and future. Both diver types are more unusual than headdliners.
The present (in 2989) Shaman of Atoll is Magumika, who happens to be the granddaughter of the King of Hathuhunt, Rao Colette. This fact only increases the authority of the Hathuhunt Republic. But lest we accuse them of fixing the nomination, let’s note that headdliners and divers tend to appear in royal lines, the more powerful ones in the more dignified families. The position of Shaman of Atoll is serious business: each shaman inherits the memory of her predecessors, going all the way to the Super-Empire days before the Joker Calendar.
[covered VOLUME 8: from page 31 to page 45]