Chapter -102 Turn Back the Pendulum 7 Right Here
That's the Binktopia scan on
Spoiler pix under cut.
Oh things are moving so fast and yet Kubo manges to tell an emotional story as well as an action-packed one. My hand actually flew to my heart when Shunsui caught Urahara's gloomy face and then tried to reassure him about Hiyori by offering up Lisa to head into the action in such a cavalier way. I felt for Shunsui's inevitable regret--I felt for Urahara (never seen him so torn up!) and knowing from the spoiler pic what had become of Kensei, I just felt for the girls---ohhh, so this Visored fate wasn't hubris after all. It was just all one big accident!
And as if I wasn't dorking out over these two dimensional characters enough, the chapter has to show me a gallant rescuer!Shinji
This is your first and only warning: I SHIP SHINJI AND HIYORI, HAVE FOR YEARS, DEAL WITH IT! <3 Their repartee is just so awesome and it's so obvious Shinji truly cares for her.
Rescuer!Shinji even overshadowed the entrance of the kidou corps leader and vice in the chapter. Tessai and Hutch looked appropriately demonic with their little Halloween horns. I had to congratulate myself and others for calling that one (Hutch/Hachi--not Tessai--as a kidou expert). Tessai shouldn't have been a surprise but his rank above Hutch was. I was just pleased as punch with myself because my last call (Kenpachi isn't real! He's inside Ichigo's mind!) was so wrong, and even before the clever fanbois had posted their theories noting that Hutch had kidou corps marks on his lovely round head, I just knew that he wasn't fourth division healing material.
And so there are all theories about Orihime's powers being "Visored-like" hereby invalidated. I always thought they were wrong. Hutch told Rukia that his powers were "time restorative" based rather than true healing and that's when I knew that he wasn't really fourth division. That scene happened when Hutch was trying to heal Ichigo after Ichigo's fight with Grimmjow (before Orihime's bedside confession/goodbye scene)
Later, the Visored observe that Orihime and Hutch are similar in powers and Hutch gives Orihime some mentoring when she comes to visit the Visored camp. He tells her that some people are not cut out for battle--I always thought he was talking about himself here, but he was a KIDOU expert all this time. And so is it that Orihime, who has a power that according to Aizen, trespasses the territory of G-D, is actually a prodigy in the demon arts?
Oh yeah, and remember what I said about trusting Urahara implicitly? I still do. He looks SO sorrowful, so innocent, so totally uncalculating in this chapter that I have to wonder ... is Kubo about to pull some twist and does Urahara indeed have some knowledge of what's going on out there at Kensei's campground? I still think he's the well-meaning good guy, and that Aizen's behind the wickedness but I'm starting to wonder about Urahara complicity now.... maybe unintentional complicity ....
Some major guilt laid on Kisuke would be nice at this point. I'd like to see him carry that around for the rest of the manga. Of course, he's already getting his share because of what's going to happen to Hiyori.
Man, Bleach is so good lately. *blows kisses to Kubo-sensei*
Oh one more thing. After weeks of horrible writer's block, I can happily report I've become unstuck. The funny thing is that I used the metaphor of Shinji's phonograph to help me. Ever since LB7 ( r0ck3tsci3ntist )drew this pic of Shinji and Hiyori (see fanart under cut--warning, mild nudity, rated R).....
ever since r0ck3tsci3ntist drew this I've been grooving on the image of reiatsu making the phonograph player run and what makes debbie's muse go.
My friend Q had a post yesterday that was all this awesomeness about architecture and prophecy and somewhere in there she got to mentioning the artist's intent, and fresh from my Shinji experience, I wrote her:
To use the metaphor of Shinji's phonograph in which my intent is the needle, I merely had to take the intent off one song and put it on another. Only then could I ride that magical groove fits my will but the effort in getting unstuck was huge. It involved getting up and walking across the room to fiddle with the actual phonograph.
That means I can write again! *throws confetti*
AND LB7, YOU SAID YOU WOULD FINISH THIS SKETCH, YOU SO HAVE TO, YOU SO HAVE TO--IT KEEPS INSPIRING ME.