Chapter 199: Ugly
So, Rukia cons Ichigo’s family into giving her a room.
Seems like Karin suspects something, though. And I’m willing to bet that Isshin knows exactly what’s going on. portal opening, with two arrancar behind it, but never mind that for now; we have Rangiku forcing her way into Orihime’s home! Hitsu’ grumpy, but Rangiku takes a bath. Some character development that I’ll go over later
happens, which is also an excuse for fanservice. Then, outside, Grimmjow and a group of five Arrancar are visible. One of them notes that there are most people around than Ulquiorra mentioned,
so they sense around carefully, and yes, there are more.
Grimmjow correctly guesses that reinforcements from SS have arrived, and he criticizes Ulquiorra for letting it get this far. He calls the other five by name and tells them to split up and kill them all
Chapter 200: Night of The Sledgehammer
A few pages spent on showing where they all are recap. The Arrancar move out, and the Shinigami can immediately tell what’s happening. Ichigo and Rukia panic a bit, and it seems one’s going after Chad. Ikkaku, Yumichika, Hitsugaya and Rangiku all prepare for battle, but Shawlong and Nakeem instantly appear in front of the latter two. Shawlong introduces himself as ‘Arrancar no. 11
, and he and Hitsugaya exchange banter. Meanwhile, Chad dismisses Orihime’s healing fairies, and heads out to face Di Roy,
who instantly attacks, but is stopped by Ichigo. The last page shows Ikkaku facing Edrad and Yylfordt facing Renji.
So. ‘Ugly’ is the perceived ugly feelings Orihime has, ‘Night of the Sledgehammer’ is the night where the sledgehammer of the Arrancar fell. But about that Character Development
I mentioned. Orihime’s feeling some complex emotions right now. First, we have the man she loves, and yes, she does explicitly tell us that she loves Ichigo, acting strange, interacting with some shady people, and clearly upset or worried about something. However, she has no idea what’s bothering him, and he refuses to let her in. She still tries to help him, but she just doesn’t know what to say or do, so nothing comes of that. And then, when she decides to solve the Arrancar problem on her own without relying on Ichigo to save her, so as to not burden him any further, she completely fails and not only needs to be rescued, but actually gets in his way. And then, later, clearly wrecked with guilt and feeling useless, he actually goes and apologizes to her for letting her get hurt. Her attempted heroics only made things worse for Ichigo’s mental condition, and she knows it! And she still doesn’t have any idea what’s wrong with him, still doesn’t know what she can do to make things better. Then, Rukia, a female friend of his, shows up and manages to cheer him up, bring the old Ichigo back in a few minutes
. So that brings us to her current condition. On the one hand, Ichigo’s back to normal. She knows she should be happy about that, and she is, but on the other hand, it was Rukia who brought him back, and so easily at that. So naturally, she can’t help but feel jealous of Rukia, and must feel her own uselessness very keenly; but is all the while hating herself for being jealous, for feeling anything but happiness about Ichigo cheering up. So yeah, that’s some heavy stuff there, isn’t it? Rangiku reassures her by saying Ichigo needs all the help he can get, that she’s just as important as Rukia is, and anyway, she shouldn’t let this stuff get her down, but rather stand up and try to work past them, to change things. A bit lacklustre compared to what she’s going through, I think, but perhaps all Orihime needs right now is some words of encouragement. I’d really have anything to say about the other chapter other than to pity Chad though; it was basically just setting up some fights.