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Murder mysteries never looked so cute.

"True genius resides in the capacity for evaluation of uncertain, hazardous, and conflicting information."
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Gosick (-ゴシック-, Goshikku, Gothic) is a Japanese Light Novel series written by Kazuki Sakuraba, illustrated by Hinata Takeda and published by Fujimi Shobo. The first novel was released on December 10, 2003. The ninth and final one was published on July 23, 2011. GosickS, a series of short side stories set in this universe, released four collections total. Tokyopop licensed the novels in the United States and has released the first two.

The story is set in 1924, in the fictional European country of Sauville (also known as Saubure). At St. Marguerite Academy, a school where the students love to gossip about horror stories and urban legends, many real mysteries find their way into school lore. There, Kazuya Kujo, a Japanese transfer student and the third son of an Imperial soldier, meets Victorique, a strange girl who is so small and beautiful that she can easily be confused with a living bisque doll. Her intelligence and smoking habit, however, make her resemble Sherlock Holmes more than Shinku. She spends her days skipping class, reading multiple books at a time on the top floor of the library, and solving mysteries so difficult they have even the police stumped. As the series progresses, Kazuya and Victorique continue to get involved in strange cases, where they meet many kinds of people, both good and bad. Despite the moe-style art, its tone is rather serious.

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A manga adaptation, illustrated by Amano Sakuya, ran in Monthly Dragon Age until 2012. A drama CD, based on the first volume of GosickS, was released on April 21, 2006. An 24 episode anime adaptation by Studio Bones began airing on January 7th, 2011. Finally, a novel series set before the original series's Distant Finale, Gosick New Continent, was launched in 2013, lasting until 2016.

In America, Bandai Entertainment licensed the anime, although they decided to stop distributing DVDs before they were able to give it a physical release. However, the Gosick anime was streamed by Crunchyroll until their license expired in August 2014, and Australian licensee Madman Entertainment released the series in in two DVD volumes as well as streaming it on their site. Funimation currently holds the North American license to the series and released it on home video with an English dub in May of 2017.

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Tropes:

  • The Abridged Series: Here.
  • Absurdly Long Stairway: The labyrinthine stairway of St. Marguerite Academy's library was supposedly constructed in such a way so that the King of Sauville could meet with his mistress at the top floor, without prying eyes.
  • Abusive Parent: Albert de Blois uses Victorique for her intellect, so he keeps her locked away with only books for company and refers too her as 'the little grey wolf'.
  • Action Mom: Cordelia, especially in the anime, is capable of ninja-esque manuevers with a pair of short swords.
  • Adaptational Mundanity: The anime downplays heavily all the supernatural elements from the light novel, particularly the Grey Wolves's nature, which the anime implies to be simply a very smart Human Subspecies without anything special about them. In the novel, however, it's stated they are supernaturally bond to the Old World and will die if they try to travel abroad.
  • Adaptation Distillation: The anime simplifies things towards the ending, almost entirely removing Victorique's dramatic search for Kazuya after World War II and implying their marriage through a vision instead of showing it in a second Distant Finale years later as in the novel. It also removes or replaces events of the last arc in order to make a Lighter and Softer conclusion.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The anime not only adapts the Gosick main novel series, but also integrates some of the GosickS side stories, most notably the Kuiaran II arc.
  • Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: The light novel establishes the Grey Wolves are supernaturally unable to leave the Old World, and they will die if they tried. That's the true reason why the last Brian Roscoe dies in the ship and why Victorique's hair turns silver; she only manages to survive the ordeal because she's technically only a half-Grey Wolf. However, in the anime continuity the Roscoe brothers are also half-Grey Wolf children , which means he should have survived just as Victorique if the rule still applied. The reason why he suddenly dies in the ship, even although he seemed to be only superficially wounded and was receiving medical attention, is never explained, nor is Victorique's hair change. If anything, it's only implied that it might be a case of Death by Despair and Prematurely Grey-Haired respectively due to all the tragic events.
  • Adapted Out: The light novel contains two instances of Distant Finale, the first in 1929 and the second in 1934, but only the first is shown in the anime. It gets added as a dream image of their marriage to imply the second will happen as well, though.
  • All Love Is Unrequited:
    • Grevil has been in love with Jacqueline for years. Pity that she's (a) married and (b) completely oblivious.
    • Avril's initial jealousy of Victorique over Kujo's clear fondness for her, though she seems to get over it.
  • Alternate Universe: Apart from the existence of the fictional country of Sauville, it seems that World War II starts in 1925 in this world.
  • Always Murder: Averted in the Jeantan and Leviathan cases, which did not ender in murder though the latter was a bit more complicated.
  • Amateur Sleuth:
    • Victorique is a deliquent student who solves cases that her brother brings to her.
    • Grevil could qualify as well, seeing as his inspector-status is due to his aristocratic position and not actual talent. He also acquired his position due to taking credit for solving cases which Victorique actually solved.
  • Arc Words: "The coming wind" or all other variants, which can be easily inferred to be World War II. Preparing for this is the reason Albert de Blois did everything he did.
  • Arrested for Heroism: Kazuya gets arrested when he reports a murder he witnessed to Grevil, who thinks the way it supposedly happened was impossible, and therefore Kazuya is lying to cover it up.
  • Art Shift: Most of the opening sequence is drawn and colored in an Art Nouveau style reminiscent of Alphonse Mucha.
  • Audible Sharpness: The Hunting Dog's axe in Episode 3 makes noise somehow
  • Auction of Evil: The girls that were being auctioned off in the Jeantan case are presented as sacrifical victims in demonic ritual. That is how evil it is.
  • Awesome Anachronistic Apparel: Victorique's gorgeous and frilly dresses are out of time even in the setting of the story. This is because they are hand-me-downs from a previous era in fashion.
  • Ax-Crazy
    • Ned, who even goes berserk with an actual axe.
    • Harminia completely loses it after being outed as the true murderer of the village elder.
  • Badass Bookworm
    • When the bookworm starts beating the shit out of an axe-murderer with a pair of brass knuckles, one might imagine that he's not to be trifled with.
    • When the other bookworm drops books on the fake Avril, she is not to be trifled with either.
  • Batman Gambit: In Episode 22, Victorique uses one on Kujo (and the other students at the school to an extent) to make sure that when they take a gift from under the Christmas tree he gets the one she brought. With her Wellspring of Wisdom, she knew exactly how they would react so, so the outcome was inevitable.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames:
    • Kazuya and the true murderer of Salliune's elder face off on the ignited bridge leading into the village.
    • Episode 23: Cordelia and Albert de Blois' sword-fight takes place on a burning stage after Brian Roscoe blows up the entire building that surrounds them.
  • Belly Dancer: Episode 6 reveals the origins of Cordelia Gallo, whom came to Saubreme after being shunned by her home village. She began to work as a dancer at a cabaret, and managed to catch the attentions of the Brian Roscue brothers and Marquis de Blois.
  • Betty and Veronica: For Kazuya, Avril is the ordinary and friendly Betty while Victorique is the exotic and icy Veronica.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Episode 3. Kujo with Brass knuckles against a threat to his only friend. It doesn't end well for that guy.
  • Bishounen:
    • Inspector Blois is fairly attractive, if you can ignore his absurd haircut. In Episode 11, we see him before he got his strange new hairstyle. No doubt the female fans were quite pleased. In Episode 13, he shows up without his hairstyle and neither Kazuya nor Cecile recognize him. The latter swoons.
    • There'a also Brian Roscoe, whose good looks certainly help him charm his audiences
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Fake Avril aka The Second Kuiaran is not a sweet girl. She's actually a vicious thief.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Cordelia and the Brians are dead, Sauville is severely disrupted by war, but Marquis de Blois will never cause anyone trouble again and Grevil decided on what was truly important to him in the end. Also, Kujo and Victorique are finally reunited and are assumed to be married and live happily after.
  • Blind Without 'Em: Cecil can't see much without her big glasses. One instance she takes off her glasses so she doesn't have to see anything scary.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Luigi is a fiesty little street kid with a smart mouth.
  • Breather Episode: Episode 12 is Kujo and Victorique's summer vacation. Nothing dangerous happens. It's just a pleasant time together where the "mystery" is a logic puzzle sent by Kujo's elder brother.
  • The Butler Did It: Two cases:
    • In the Queen Berry case, it was the Arabian Maid who killed Roxanne.
    • In the Seyrun village case, it was maid Harminia, who successfully framed Cordelia.
  • Chastity Couple: Victorique and Kujo. They're clearly in love, but the most we see them do onscreen is Holding Hands and hugging.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Several of the various legends and fairy-tales Kazuya and Victorique have to deal with are introduced several episodes before they become relevant, such as the Grey Wolves and Leviathan the Alchemist.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Practically every secondary character appears in his/her first scene as a seemingly irrelevant bystander. A good example is the redheaded magician on the market, who turns Kujo's textbooks into a bunch of pigeons. Over the next few episodes he is revealed to go by the name Brian Roscoe and to be associated with Victorique's mother. Or the two calm elderly gentlemen who sit right to Miss Sophie during the performance of the Queen Coco Rose play. They are Jupiter Roger and King Rupert.
  • Children Forced to Kill: In episodes two and three of the anime adaptation, Victorique and Kujo discover information about an incident 10 years ago involving several children and a grissly method of fortune telling.
  • Chocolate Baby: Queen Coco Rose's affair with the African court alchemist Leviathan has predictably messy consequences.
  • Clear My Name: Kazuya begs Victorique to help him when he is accused of murder.
  • Clear Their Name: Cordelia Gallo, Victorique's mother, was accused of murder but was innocent of the crime. So one of the mysteries Victorique solves is fingering the true murder.
  • Conviction by Contradiction: Victorique certainly has a few Encyclopedia Brown moments in her "boring" cases, so both this trope and Conviction by Counterfactual Clue come up. Almost all the claims she makes are plausible deductions, and certainly damage the original case, but they're a long way from proof. In one particular sequence which wouldn't hold up in any sane court: Cheesewire over the road when the police arrived? Absolute proof that your friend didn't garrotte the victim with it beforehand. The use of a trap device like that? Could only be a woman or a child, as men are always directly violent. Oh, and your friend thought about blonde hair while out walking? Clearly that's your criminal, seen from the corner of the eye, because boys never daydream about women randomly!
  • The Corpse Stops Here: In the anime's 4th episode, Kujo is accused of a murder by Grevil just because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
  • Darkest Hour: Episode 22. Sauville is preparing for war. Marquis de Blois gets ready to make his move and Grevil has revealed himself to be his loyal dragon. Also Kujo has been kidnapped and is being used to blackmail Victorique.
  • Death Trap:
    • The Queen Berry is loaded with traps meant to kill those trapped on it.
    • The cause of the deaths in the school clock tower after an alchemist's hidden lair become a minor tourist site. The alchemist in question triggered a poison dart to sting anyone who tried to find his stash of gold.
  • Detective Drama: The arcs are framed by mysteries which Victorique solves, with help from Kujo.
  • Disney Villain Death: The true murderer of the Village Elder dies from a long fall from a high point. It also counts as a Karmic Death because the only reason they were in such a position is because they committed several foul acts to avoid such a fate.
  • Distant Finale: It is set four years after the events of the series, in 1929, and shows Kazuya and Victorique reunited in Japan after the war is over. The light novel has an additional scene set in 1934 where they are married and operating the Grey Wolf Detective Agency in United States. The sequel series, Gosick New Continent, is set between those two scenes, making it more of an Interquel.
  • Dual Wielding: Cordelia fights with two blades.
  • Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: Victorique has them in the flashbacks to her days living with the de Blois family, because this is before she met Kujo and everyone treated her like a dangerous beast.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In the finale, Victorique and Kujo go through hell to live for each other by doing the impossible to survive WWII and find each other again. After the war, they are reunited and they finally get to stay together forever.
  • Elaborate University High: St. Marguerite Academy is not just an academy. It is also a storehouse for weapons that the country would use in war, and the site of a alchemist's labratory.
  • Elegant Gothic Lolita: Victorique always wears big dresses that have lots of frills and ribbon, complete with a tiny hat or headress. Her mother is the same.
  • Emotionless Girl:
    • Victorique seems to be this while on the Queen Berry, but she's really just repressing them. It appears that her emotionless personality is caused by years of being locked up in a dungeon, but comes to accept that by meeting Kujo, she became a gentler person who knows love.
    • Grey wolves in general are supposedly this, but it turns out to be just a misconception by non-grey wolves.
  • Evil Versus Evil: Whilst the series as a whole doesn't qualify, the background struggle between the Ministry of the Occult and Science Academy definitely does because both of them are populated by terrible people. Their ends are different but their means are the same.
  • Eye Scream: Roxanne the Fortune Teller is shot in the eye.
  • Fair-Play Whodunnit: Technically all clues to solve the mysteries are given, although Victorique often has to use very outlandish reasoning to piece them together, which is awesome.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero: Grevil, thanks to taking all the credit for Victorique's deductions, is thought to be a genius investigator by the public.
  • Faking the Dead:
    • One of the "hares" from the first Queen Berry pretended to die so he could spook the other children. He perfectly replicates this tactic on the second Queen Berry.
    • Queen Coco Rose's maid took the king's beating for bearing an illegitimate child for her, leading to her own death by the king's. We see her once toward the episode where her escape is realized by Victorique. Surprisingly, the King didn't realize it wasn't her that he killed.
  • Fictional Country: Gosick is set in Sauville, a fictitious country very ostensibly based on the historical Savoy, which became an independent Duchy somewhere during the Middle Ages and existed as a country until it was annexed by France in 1860 during the Italian unification movement. Savoy was located on the slopes of the Alps, but also had control of the port city of Nice, which Sauville conflates by stretching down from the Alps to the Mediterranean coast.
  • Foreshadowing: One notable point in the anime's opening is when it shows Brian Roscoe. When the spotlights hit him, he casts two shadows.
  • Fortune Teller: Roxanne is known as a fortune teller and she predicts WWI. To determine the winners of this war, she put "hares" onto a "box on the sea" and then set a "hunting dog" amongst them. The survivors would tell her who would win.
  • Friend on the Force: Grevil is part of Saubre's police force and he asks Victorique for assistance because she is smarter than him. Though it's more like Brother On The Force who takes the credit for your hard work.
  • Food as Bribe: Kazuya gives Victorique various Japanese snacks in exchange for her help.
  • Girl in a Box:
    • Kazuya finds one in Episode 9, who was hiding to escape a group of slavers.
    • Cordelia was frequently hiding out in a mechanical automaton.
  • Good Smoking, Evil Smoking: Victorique carries a pipe and enjoys smoking it in the novels. In the anime, she only seems to have the habit to suck it instead of actually smoking, as it's illegal to show underage people smoking or drinking alcohol on Japanese public television.
  • Gorgeous Period Dress: Even though the series is set in The Roaring '20s, Victorique wears old-fashioned Elegant Gothic Lolita style dresses. It is possibly explained in that Victorique is said to sound and act like an old woman, and tends to be given old hand-me-downs by her family rather than anything more modern due to her interesting parental issues.
  • Gratuitous English: In the credits to one of the novels, the title is explained to be a play on the word Gothic, representing the "sickness" that was present during the story's time period.
  • Great Big Library of Everything: St. Marguerite Academy's library is huge. Victorique feeds her Wellspring of Wisdom from its countless books.
  • Guns Akimbo: During the assassination mission against the Marquis de Blois, the Roscoe guarding Cordelia's back wields a pair of submachine-guns note .
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold:
    • In the novels, Victorique's blond hair is mentioned a lot. Grevil and Avril have it, too. All of them are good-hearted, but Avril is the only one in whom this is immediate appearant.
    • In the anime, Victorique's almost certainly the legendary "Golden Fairy Of The Library" due to this.
  • Happy Ending Override: Downplayed in the Gosick New Continent sequel, where it's revealed Kazuya's father didn't accept his engagement to Victorique and they were forced to move to United States to escape his rage. It ends with them finally marrying there, though, which is how the second distant finale in the first Gosick series ends. New Continent takes place between the two distant finales.
  • Happily Ever After: Victorique and Kujo reunite in Japan after WWII. The anime ends with them walking together while holding hands and promising to stay together forever, with an image of Victorique wearing a wedding dress and carrying a bouquet suggesting they get married. The light novels expand a bit more, showing explicitly they marry and eventually setup a detective agency in the US.
  • Heroic Bastard: Victorique is an illegitimate daughter of the de Blois family with a politically-troublesome mother, which is why she's spent most of her life isolated from the rest of society.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Cordelia and one of the Brian Roscoes rescue Victorique from her prison, then Cordelia pretends to be her until Albert de Blois's arrival. This was to make smugling Victorique out of the city possible. Victorique and the other Brian Roscoe don't think they will make it out alive. Their fate is left unclear, however, as their survival is hinted at in Gosick: Blue.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The Village of Gray Wolves a.k.a. Seyrun. Outsiders are welcome to visit, and residents — even children of exiled residents — can leave and return on a special occason, but otherwise it is closed off. In fact, when the bridge that connects them to the larger country is burned, none of them care enough to put the fire out, because they are self-sufficient. Many of them are actually a Human Subspecies; pale, petite, green-eyed blondes with Super Intelligence, capable of Awesomeness by Analysis, and Sherlock Scans. The village Elders, meanwhile, are oracles. Non-cryptic ones! Though they do give the odd Self-Fulfilling Prophecy, and it really sucked for Cordelia Gallo when the Marquis de Blois realized she was a Grey Wolf.
  • Holding Hands: Happens a lot during Kazuya and Victorique's various Ship Tease moments.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf:
    • Victorique. When she sings in the bath, Kujo first thinks that she is screaming in pain or fear.
    • One of the CDs features her singing the song "Incertitude". It is absolutely painful to listen to. There's also a second version of the song included as a bonus track in which her VA sings properly. It's difficult to tell that it's even the same person.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Avril is infatuated with Kujo, but he never notices due to his Official Couple-ness with Victorique.
  • Human Notepad: In the light novel, Victorique tattooes herself (painfully) with Kazuya's address before being captured by the Sauville government. Given that she was stripped of virtually everything and could not simply memorize the address due to it being in Japanese characters, this was the only way not to lose it. It later saves her when she falls into a coma and is captured by a Japanese prostitution ring, which frees her upon seeing the tattoo and thinking the Kujou family might be searching for her.
  • Hyper-Awareness: Unusually for this sort of series, largely averted.
    • Victorique is most used to solving mysteries second-hand, so while she does pick up on a fair amount while she's on-scene, most of it is pretty basic or relates to her personal experience. In fact, it's Kazuya who she tends to rely on to get the facts for her.
    • Luigi, however, has an amazing memory and once counted the money that fell out of Kazuya's pocket before it hit the floor.
  • Hypocrite: Both the Ministry of the Occult and the Science Academy don't practice what they preach. The former uses scientific principles in its work more than it does anything resembling magic, whilst the latter is led by one of the possibly-mystic Grey Wolves.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: The series makes an art form of this, with episode titles so heavily metaphorical that you can get an idea what the episode is about just from the title ('Blue Roses Bloom in the Cannibal Department Store'), while others only make sense after viewing the episode ('A Malicious Frill is Censuring the Farting Newt').
  • Improbable Hairstyle: Grevil has drill hair, which Kazuya immediately points out and Victorique relentlessly mocks. Grevil mentions to Kazuya that it was Victorique's idea in exchange for her cooperation on a case, and was one of the reasons he doesn't like asking for her help directly.
  • Inexplicably Identical Individuals: There are an astonishing number of Sauvillian women who look very much like the late Queen Coco Rose. To make matters even weirder, she was not known for her plain, generic features (which might explain such a coincidence), but for being one of the country's most celebrated beauties. Given how much Coco Rose's inspiration Marie Antoinette influenced contemporary fashion, it meant that many women actually tried to look like her. That, a large enough sample size, and the usual stylization can explain the rest.
  • In-Series Nickname: The students of St. Marguerite call Kazuya "The Black/Dark Reaper" or "The Reaper Who Comes In Spring" because of a local ghost story that he happens to fit. They also call Victorique "The Golden Fairy of the Library" because of her mysterious nature and the place she supposedly haunts.
  • Interchangeable Asian Cultures: It takes quite a few of the citizens of Sauville more than one go to correctly identify Kazuya's country of origin. Hardly surprising, given the relative lack of international travel at the time. Some people throughout the series call to him by saying, "Hey Chinese!" They either don't know his Japanese heritage or just don't care.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Things get considerably darker once the Marquis de Blois takes an active role in proceedings.
  • Large Ham: Grevil is introduced with a loud and silly discusion about squrriels and he even has hammy, over-exaggerated hair. According to his childhood friend — who married someone else — he used to behave differently before he got the hair. Which means that he decided to become a ham in order to live up to his hair.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Roxanne the fortune teller turns out to have been zapped by her own past misdeeds, as does every single guest on the second Queen Berry who (a) isn't Kazuya or Victorique, and (b) isn't the person who set up the entire Death Course to begin with.
  • Last-Name Basis: Victorique always calls Kazuya by his last name, "Kujo".
  • Lighter and Softer: The last arc is tweaked in the anime in order to make it less traumatic and more satisfactory, as well as shorter. In the original series, Albert was simply arrested by the Sauville government instead of killed, Cordelia and the first Brian were executed after saving Victorique, the latter passed a whole year subjected to experiments with drugs to use her during the war, and afterwards Victorique had to escape a Japanese prostitution ring until finally reaching Kazuya's family. Meanwhile, in the anime Cordelia dies killing Albert, the first Brain Roscoe dies at Cordelia's side, the second Brian Roscoe overcomes enough hatred of Victorique to enourage her to live before dying of his own injuries, and Victorique escapes from Sauville and the Monstre Charmant movement. Victorique's search of Kazuya is offscreen and presumably much less dramatic.
  • Light Feminine and Dark Feminine: Avril and Victorique are light and dark, respectively. Avril is bright and cute and friendly, while Victorique is more elegant and mysterious and temperamental.
  • Little Girls Kick Shins: When Victorique is particularly annoyed/bored, she invariably expresses her annoyance with a kick to Kujo's shin.
  • Little Miss Snarker: Victorique is shorter than everyone except her own mother and young children, and she sasses everyone.
  • Locked Room Mystery: Episode 1 has one of these. In fact, the lock itself turns out to be instrumental to the murder method.
  • Magical Realism: Despite the down-to-earth explanations for most of the strange occurrences in the story, some apparently genuine supernatural elements (such as highly accurate prophecies and the Grey Wolves' possibly-superhuman mental faculties) do appear to exist.
  • Magic Versus Science: The heart of the Secret War between the Science Academy and the Ministry of the Occult is a debate over which is the better power. Whilst the Academy has the advantage of far more empirical evidence on its side (and of not being run by the Marquis de Blois), both factions fight so dirty that it's impossible to call either one the good guys.
  • Mama Bear:
    • Cecil is shown to be protective of her students, especially Victorique.
    • Cordelia is very protective of her daughter Victorique, to the point she makes it her sole reason of living.
  • Meido: Victorique has to borrow a change of clothes from the train staff in Episode 18 because she was soaked at the climax of the previous episode, and somehow they find a maid's uniform that fits a very short 13-14 year old girl who looks like 10 or 12. Maids tended to start out at that age in the period, so it's not out of place. Kujo meanwhile gets a waiter uniform.
  • The Mole: The English boy Ned on the first Queen Berry is not a "hare" but a "hunting dog" meant to spoke the other children.
  • Mood Whiplash: Frequently changes from dramatic crime-solving, to humor, to d'aww, often within seconds.
  • Moral Event Horizon: The in-universe reaction of just about everyone to Victorique's mother, Cordelia, apparently murdering her village's elder, a highly revered prophet. Among other things, it resulted in her being banished from her home, losing her prospective husband, and having her daughter locked away from society for most of the rest of her life. Although, as it turned out, the husband-and-daughter thing was really more of an excuse told to the rest of the world to cover up something far nastier.
  • Murderous Mannequin: Episode 9 opens with Avril telling Kujo a horror story about a mannequin that invites people that stop by store window into the store after closing hours. She, or a spirit possessing the mannequin, then consumes the victim in the dressing room.
  • Mystery of the Week: Kujo has a tendency to stumble into mysteries, which he then presents to Victorique to solve. This is the format for mot episdes.
  • Mystery Magnet: Kazuya is starting to get an in-series reputation for tripping over gruesome murders wherever he goes, and it's not without reason. Hence the name The Black Reaper.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Beelzebub's Skull; why in the world would someone name a nunnery after after a demon?
  • Nasty Party: Everyone invited to the Miniature Garden Box Evening is there so that one of the "hares" from the first Queen Berry (Julie) can have their revenge for what happened 10 years before.
  • New Transfer Student:
    • Kazuya transfers to St. Marguerite Academy before the start of the series, and this is why he called "The Reaper Who Comes in Spring"
    • Avril Bradley transfers in some time later after Kazuya, which means that no one could tell her apart from the thief pretending to be her.
  • Nice Guy: Kazuya's kindess and tolerance for difficult people helps a lot with putting up with Victorique.
  • Nice Hat:
    • Kazuya. It's not often you see a 15-year-old wear a hat like that.
    • Victorique usually wears a frilly bonnet. In Episode 6, she briefly wears a bejeweled turban, though it looks silly on her.
    • In Episode 21, Victorique tries on a crown (it's prop, not a real one). It's much too big and actually covers her entire face when she's not holding it up. Her whole purpose in trying it on was to make certain that it could contain an entire human head of specific size.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Kujo is on the receiving end of one-sided beating in Episode 23 from a Drill Sergeant Nasty who even kicks him for good measure.
  • No Social Skills: Victorique never really had a chance to develop socil skills because of her father's insistence that she develop her intellect instead, resulting in her characteristic bluntness and making such things as her attempts at polite laughter a... memorable experience for all present.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Pulled off by Grevil, of all people, in Episode 10. If Episode 11 is any indication, Grevil has always been fairly bright... just not as bright as Victorique. He's still quite dumb with various weird conclusions he makes. He's smart in very narrow fields, and police work is not one of them, despite his good eye for detail — when he bothers looking in the first place.
  • Of Corset Hurts: Victorique runs afoul of an antique corset in Episode 22 when putting on a Christmas costume. Kujo is the one lacing it for her, and he asks if her sweet tooth has caused her to put on weight. Victorique elbows him in response.
  • Official Couple: Kazuya and Victorique set up to fall for each other quickly, though Victorique refuses to acknowledge such feelings for some time. The anime's OP is centered on how they are linked by destiny, and were following an invisible line to each other. The first series ends with their engagement, and the second distant finale includes their wedding.
  • Off with His Head!: The victim in Episode 5 is beheaded by razor wire and a motorcycle.
  • Older Than They Look: Grey Wolves tend to look younger than they really are, thanks to their short stature and childlike frames.
  • "Open!" Says Me: Avril kicks open a couple of doors in the clock tower. Each time afterwards, she hops around in pain for a bit. Fashionable heels aren't really meant for this sort of thing, you know?
  • Outrun the Fireball: Kujo outruns a floodwater while carrying Victorique in Episode 17.
  • Parental Abandonment: Victorique's mother was forcefully separated from her after birth. Her father, meanwhile, took this to the point of actual abuse until Grevil stepped in.
  • Phone-In Detective: Very common for Victorique, due to the restrictions her family have placed on her movements. In fact, it's implied to be the exclusive method by which she helped out Grevil before Kazuya came along. She's literally this in the Jeantan case, due to being bedridden with sickness.
  • Ping-Pong Naïveté: Victorique is solving a complex crime with second-hand information one moment, and not knowing that one can get a carriage for hire the next because she has been cloistered her whole life in a library.
  • Police Are Useless: The local police are generally not helpful, and it doesn't help that an Upper-Class Twit is their acclaimed chief investigator. This is averted in the Jeantan case, as they successfully implement Victorique's plan to find the victims and then arrest the perpetrators without further help.
  • Property of Love: Victorique claims Kujo belongs to her several times. First, she says he is her "vassal" and later she says he is her "heart".
  • Prophet Eyes: Used, naturally, whenever someone's making a prophecy, though it's really more of a case of their eyes rolling up in their heads.
  • Rape as Backstory: Cordelia, Victorique's mother, was kidnapped by the Marquis de Blois and forced to bear his child once he found out that she was a Grey Wolf.
  • Rapunzel Hair:
    • Victorique's hair reaches her ankles, which showcases her beautiful golden hair. She is the (illegitimate) daughter of a nobleman, after all, and she has a vassal (i.e. Kujo) to bring her sweets and mysteries, so it doesn't get in her way.
    • Cordelia, Victorique's mother has really long blonde hair, and dresses like some noblewoman but she is anything but wealthy and high-status. It also doesn't get in the way when she fights.
    • Avril has blond hair but it is really short, so she she considers growing it out to catch Kazuya's eye.
  • Red Herring:
    • The fake Avril's injured hand. It was, in fact, evidence of a crime, but not the one Kazuya was thinking of.
    • Also, Cordelia's murder charges. That was the reason her child's father wants nothing to do with her any more, right? Wrong!
  • Say My Name: Kujo has the tendency to shout Victorique's name due to stress or danger of the current situation.
  • Scary Black Man: Leviathan the Alchemist is shown to be this, although it had nothing to do with his being African, but with the fear people had of the mystery of his mask and his alchemy, which was revealed by Victorique to be false. The clothes he donned and the ruse he perpetrated were all to try to discourage further exploitation of his home country by Sauville's royalty.
  • "Scooby-Doo" Hoax: In Episode 4, we're told that there's an abandoned storehouse that is haunted by the ghost of a former student. In the following episode, it's revealed to be a ruse by the Second Kuiaran to keep people from going inside, since that's where she's keeping the real Avril Bound and Gagged.
  • Screaming Birth: Victorique's mother screamed constantly during her birth, and this is highly justified, given that the birth in question was an obstetrician's nightmare. Forget an epidural, this mother was chained up in a dungeon without any medical professionals of any kind present.
  • Secret War: the Ministry of the Occult and the Science Academy, two powerful political factions battling over control of the government. This has gone on for decades, long before the events of the show. Leviathan unwittingly stepped into the middle of it, and was targeted by both sides; the Academy wanted to discredit him and the Ministry wanted him to join them.
  • Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: Harminia's motivation for murdering the Elder of Seyrun and later attempting to destroy the tiny city-state was to prevent her own foretold death at age 26. Naturally, the plan went wrong and she eventually ended up causing her demise just as the elder had predicted.
  • Sherlock Scan: Victorique is very good at analyzing events and people, though her tendency to rely on second-hand information means that she lacks much of the corresponding Hyper-Awareness when she's on the scene herself. She refers to his as "reconstructing the truth from the fragments of chas with her wellspring of wisdom".
  • Ship Tease:
    • Many sweet moments take place between Kazuya and Victorique. It helps that despite her appearance, they're actually about the same age.
    • Avril has a crush on Kazuya, but she has no moments with him. It goes about as well as you'd expect.
    • There's also a moment in the anime when Jacqueline reminisces, Luminescent Blush and all, about how striking Grevil was when they were younger. It's fair to assume that if Grevil had expressed his feelings for her earlier, he might not have ended up an Unlucky Childhood Friend.
  • Shorter Means Smarter: Victorique and Luigi are the shortest in the cast, and have the greatest analytical minds. Luigi isn't even a grey wolf, he's just that smarter naturally. He gets taller in the distant finale.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A girl with long golden hair trapped at the top of a tower by the person who raised her until a boy stumbles upon her. Remind you of anything?
    • Victorique uses a pipe when she's thinking in a way similar to the popular conception of Sherlock Holmes, although in the anime she just holds it in her mouth instead of actually smoking anything.
    • In Episode 22, Avril wears a costume for Christmas that greatly resembles Tinker Bell.
  • Shrouded in Myth: The Grey Wolves, a legendary European bloodline known for their short stature, golden hair, lack of emotions and vast intellect, are the source of several local legends and a great deal of general superstition.
  • Spanner in the Works: Kazuya and Victorique really complicate the Queen Berry murder plot. It didn't help that the culprit, being a Sympathetic Murderer, didn't want to see two innocent children die in the gigantic Death Course they'd set up, and so had to expose themselves more than they would have otherwise wished to in order to keep them safe.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": There is some contention on how to romanize various names in the series, including those of the main heroine, the police inspector, and the fictional country they live in.
  • Stage Magician: Several, including the Phantasmagoria troupe, though towering above them all is the legendary Brian Roscoe, whose stunts include using a magic lantern and a picture of the Virgin Mary to take out an entire German bomber squadron.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: The elder of Seyrun predicted that an event that will soon come will tear Kazuya and Victorique apart. With World War II coming up, it'll be no surprise, seeing as he's Japanese and she's (Allied) European. Then it actually happens, over a decade early, and they still get back together afterward.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Victorique looks so much like Cordelia that even Kazuya and Grevil, her own brother, mistake the daughter for the mother and vice versa. Apparently Cordelia's hometown in filled with Inexplicably Identical Individuals. Her mother has noticeably larger breasts (that is, any) than her daughter, even after the Time Skip where we see Victorique at around 18, but it's hard to tell under the frills.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Victorique occupies the middle ground between this trope and Tsundere, being more cranky than the average Sugar-and-Ice Personality and more reserved than the average Tsundere.
  • Sympathetic Murderer: The surviving "hares" of the first Queen Berry, save for Ned, where all children forced into a kill-or-die situation by a grup of terrible adults.
  • Take My Hand!: Victorique reaches out to Kazuya when the only bridge to the Grey Wolf village collapses. This is significant because Victorique reaches for Kazuya instead of the momento necklace from her mother, which was also falling.
  • Throw the Book at Them: Victorique's method of dealing with the fake Avril Bradley is to drop a full trunk of books on them.
  • To the Tune of...: The OP "Destin Historie" sounds awfully similar to "Sorairo Days" and vice versa, as pointed out in this video.
  • Together in Death: In the anime, Cordelia and one of the Roscoes die together. The Roscoe navigates the flames and corpses in order to find Cordelia's body, sits down next to it, takes her hand, and then expires.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: The Village of the Grey Wolves is the site of an event that influences a terrible tragedy, the framing of Cordelia Galleo and her exile.
  • Translation Convention: In the final episode it can be assumed that most of the cast have been talking French the entire time as Kujo's sister says she doesn't speak enough of it to talk properly with Victorique when she arrives in Japan.
  • Tsurime Eyes: Victorique and Avril both have upturned eyes but only Victorique has the sharp personality to match. Avril is way too friendly to count but her imposter counts.
  • Upper-Class Twit: Grevil is a large ham with a ridiculous hairstyle and is the chief investigator because his father is a nobleman. One can only imagine what state Sauville's criminal justice system would be in without Victorique around....
  • Vague Age: In Episode 7, Victorique indirectly states that she's around ten to twelve years old, though later recollections by other characters place her as being around fifteen, which would fit with the tendency for Grey Wolves to be Older Than They Look and explain why she's in Kazuya's class at school. This is acknowledged in the Episode 24 description given to folks trying to capture Victorique as she runs as far away from Sauville - as was suggested - as she can get.
  • Vestigial Empire: Seyrun is very, very vestigial. It is one little village in a rural area.
  • Villainous Breakdown: A common fate for criminals outed by Kazuya and Victorique is a hit to their sanity. Harminia is particularly notable for starting her breakdown before this - clearly, plotting to destroy the village that's been your home for most of your life is somewhat detrimental to one's mental wellbeing.
  • The Watson: Kazuya asks Victorique to explain how she solved the crimes so she can do so for the audience.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Episode 19, which shows just how horrifying Victorique's Back Story really is.
    • Episode 22 when it turns out Grevil helping Kujo find Victorique and his affection for his little sister might have all been an act.
    • Dear God, Episode 23. Kujo's been deported. Victorique is Albert's prisoner. Albert has defeated the Science Academy and taken control of Sauville. And then... Cordelia reaches new levels of badass in confronting Albert at a public function, stages a terrorist attack on him with Brian Roscoe's help, and then kills him in a swordfight. Then she gets killed, and Brian's twin makes an attempt on Victorique's life. Holy shit.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: Kujo, so far, demonstrates an admirable degree of restraint even in the face of likely death. When the lives or freedom of innocents hang on subduing a female villain, he tends to dodge more than attack. It is worth noting that the one time he fought a male villian, he did pretty well considering that his opponent was an adult.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After he had her provide him with a child, the Marquis de Blois dumped Cordelia in an asylum. Not, strictly speaking, a death sentence, but considering that this was the 1910s, close enough.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: The food at the Miniature Garden Box Evening was drugged, and when everyone wakes up, they've been moved to another room.

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